Former NASA astronaut puts Lake LBJ home up for sale

The Horseshoe Bay home of former NASA astronaut Capt. James Lovell is up for sale. The home is located along Lake LBJ on the Lighthouse Drive peninsula. Stained glass windows in the home honor Capt. Lovell’s Apollo 13 and other NASA missions.

By LEW K. COHN

The Highlander Managing Editor

Former NASA astronaut and U.S. Navy Captain James Lovell and his wife Marilyn, who have been a part of the Burnet County and Llano County community for more than 25 years, have listed their 4,895-square-foot lake home in Horseshoe Bay for sale as of April 6.

The home, which is located at 416 Lighthouse Drive, is a four-bedroom, four-bathroom, two-story Mediterranean, which the Lovells had custom built in 1989. It sits on nearly half an acre with 134 feet of waterfront on Lake LBJ on the lighthouse peninsula with beautiful views of the lake from nearly every room.

The house is being sold fully furnished and boasts vaulted ceilings, a main level master bedroom, a covered patio and outdoor hot tub. It also has a boat stall with an electric lift. The property is listed with Tammie Bennett of Kuper Sotherby's International Realty with an asking price of $3.5 million.

It was a compliment to get the call from the Lovells,” Bennett said. “They are some of the nicest people I have ever met.

This home has a little bit of history as well as it shows the Lovells' character and style. It was very much their home. Mrs. Lovell even had a hard time letting me stage it.”

The Lovells are selling the home because they are no longer able to make it out to the lake as much. Marilyn Lovell asked Capt. Lovell, 88, to sell his Cessna 421 Golden Eagle, which the couple used to travel from Illinois to Texas.

She doesn't want him flying anymore,” Bennett said. “When they sold the plane, that made it harder to get down here. They used to loaded up their bags and the dog and fly here so they could spend a week or two down here, but now they can't make the trip that often anymore.”

Capt. Lovell is best known for being the commander of the Apollo 13 mission, described as a “successful failure” because NASA was able to bring home safely all three members of the team despite failing their objective of landing on the moon. He is a recipient of the Congressional Space Medal of Honor and the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

The house features five, large, round stained-glass windows in the living room which depict not only the Apollo 13 insignia, but also the insignias from Capt. Lovell's other missions as an astronaut.

I didn't realize whose house it was until I got there,” Bennett said. “I saw the disc that said 'Apollo 13' and I said, 'Oh, you're that Jim Lovell, the astronaut.'

The windows come with the house as do all of the furnishings and it would be up to the new owner if they wish to keep everything there. It really is a very nice home that is on a street which is one of the most coveted on all the lake.”

The 1995 movie “Apollo 13,” which was directed by Ron Howard and starred Tom Hanks, was an adaptation of Capt. Lovell's book, “Lost Moon: The Perilous Voyage of Apollo 13,” which he wrote with noted journalist Jeffrey Kluger.

Hanks, who portrayed Capt. Lovell, was the guest of the Lovells at the property as he was preparing for the role.

Other celebrities have properties as well in Horseshoe Bay, which has attracted many wealthy property owners because of its proximity to a large number of golf courses, its natural beauty and its easy access by air. Among those who have owned homes here are former Dallas Cowboys quarterback Roger Staubach and oilfield firefighter Red Adair.

You can pretty much do anything when it comes to activities,” Bennett said. “We have a beautiful lake that is at a constant level. It is very quiet and a laid-back, relaxing place. There is the Horseshoe Bay Resort for golf and we also very fortunate to have an airport for these property owners to fly in. I know I have had clients who have flown in, bought a home and then flown home.”

For more information about the property or to arrange a showing, you can contact Tammie Bennett at Kuper Sotheby's International Realty by calling 830-265-0550 or by email at Tammie.Bennett@SothebysRealty.com.
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